“He is mean and hateful. He constantly opposes all of my core beliefs. He mocks me at work and uses me to advance his own promotion within the company. I have watched people try to help him and he purposely hurts them. However, now he says ‘things have changed’ and that he is a ‘different person.’ Should I reach out to the guy who has hurt so many of my friends? Or is it time for him to get a taste of his own medicine?” Does this sound familiar to you? Similar situations happen in many a believer’s life on a weekly basis. Take a moment to consider the life of Barnabas this week. The name Barnabas means “son of consolation.” Barnabas was an encourager. He came along side the man called Saul (Acts 9:27) to help him grow in his walk with God. Saul definitely didn’t deserve kind treatment — he had persecuted Christians! Barnabas also came alongside another man, John Mark (Acts 12:25; 15:37-39). He was a young believer that had made some immature choices and needed someone to encourage him in his walk with God. Saul went on to be known as the apostle Paul. God used him to write more than half of the New Testament and to teach many believers how to help other believers in their walk with God (i.e.-Timothy). John Mark went on to be a help to Paul (with whom he had an earlier conflict-Acts 15:38) and God used him to write the Gospel of Mark in the New Testament. Is there someone who is crossing your path that has rubbed you the wrong way? Perhaps it is time for you to put your arm around that believer and encourage their walk with God. Start with a step of victory and come to church this Sunday…I’ll be looking for you!
Living one step at a time,
Pastor Gary Holloway